RANONG, Nov 30 – Myanmar authorities today released seven Thais sentenced to jail for illegal entry, forest encroachment and arms possession, while two others remain imprisoned for drug-related offences.
Col Uthit Anantananond, Deputy Commander of a special 25th Infantry Regiment task force, said the Myanmar’s Township Border Committee (TBC) at Kawthaung informed him that the Myanmar has freed seven Thais arrested for illegal entry, forest encroachment and possession of firearms and military weapons.
A Myanmar court earlier sentenced seven Thai nationals to 10 years and six months imprisonment each.
Col Uthit, also chairman of Thailand’s border committee at Ranong, said Thai authorities would collect them at Kawthaung and return to Ranong.
However, two remaining Thais sentenced to jail on drug offences remain in prison.
They were among 92 Thai villagers detained in July for encroaching into Myanmar. They claimed that they were persuaded by a broker to clear the land beyond the areas authorised by the Myanmar authorities for Thais to use as cultivated areas.
They were charged and sentenced for illegal entry, forest encroachment and illegal land occupation, growing illicit narcotics plants including cannabis and kratom, possession of firearms and military weapons.
The Myanmar authorities later released 83 Thais arrested for illegal entry and forest encroachment.